William F. Buckley: This is how we remember you...

via Wikipedia:
In 1968, ABC News hired Vidal and William F. Buckley, Jr. as political analysts of the Republican and Democratic presidential conventions, predicting that television viewers would enjoy seeing two men of letters engage in on-air battle; as it turned out, verbal and nearly physical combat were joined. After days of mutual bickering, their debates devolved to vitriolic, ad hominem attacks. During discussions of the 1968 Democratic National Convention Protests, the men were arguing about Freedom of Speech in regards to American protestors displaying a Viet Cong flag when Vidal told Buckley to "shut up a minute" and went on to call him a "pro-war crypto Nazi." The visibly livid Buckley replied: "Now listen, you queer. Stop calling me a crypto Nazi, or I'll sock you in the goddamn face and you'll stay plastered." After an interruption by anchor and facilitator Howard K. Smith, the men continued to discuss the topic in a less hostile manner.

Later, in 1969, the feud was continued as Buckley further attacked Vidal in the lengthy essay, "On Experiencing Gore Vidal", published in the August 1969 issue of Esquire; the essay is collected in The Governor Listeth, an anthology of Buckley's writings of the time. In a key passage attacking Vidal as an apologist for homosexuality, Buckley wrote: "the man who in his essays proclaims the normalcy of his affliction [i.e., homosexuality], and in his art the desirability of it, is not to be confused with the man who bears his sorrow quietly. The addict is to be pitied and even respected, not the pusher."


Brendan said...

Actually, Gore Vidal would like to say a few words:

Brendan said...

In last Sunday's NY Times Magazine, Deborah Solomon asks Gore Vidal how he felt when he heard Buckley died:

"I thought hell is bound to be a livelier place, as he joins forever those whom he served in life, applauding their prejudices and fanning their hatred."

Gore Vidal - 06.15.02008